Jason Isbell + Nadia Reid, live in Auckland

Having missed Jason Isbell when he visited New Zealand 4 years ago, I didn’t want to miss out this time, especially with our Nadia Reid opening as a stellar bonus – at The Powerstation venue, 27 Mar 2018.

Isbell’s work now is billed with his band as ‘Jason Isbell & the 400 Unit‘.

Now a multi-Grammy winning artist, Alabama-born Jason Isbell was a guitarist first Continue reading

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The case for MM and MI cartridges

Moving Coil cartridge design has not changed fundamentally for 30+ years.

The traditional design of almost all MC cartridges, consists of a stylus on the end of a long cantilever, with a ‘moving coil’ attached to the inner end.

This whole assembly ‘sits’ onto a soft, resilient ”suspension’ or damper’ material and held in place by a rear tension wire. Continue reading

SUN AUDIO SV-2A3 amplifier

This Japanese single-ended, vacuum tube amplifier can be purchased in ‘kit’ form or fully assembled.

Power output is 3.5 watts/channel.   Supplied with Russian Sovtek tubes – 2A3 (2), 6SN7 (2), 5U4G (1).   Amplifier weight is 16 kgs.

Input Sensitivity is high (150mV), so with the in-built volume controls, this amplifier will accept Line level sources easily. Continue reading

Every face tells a story – PERU portraits

Peruvians are known for their genial warmth and hospitality.

Peru today has a mixed population but is still predominantly ‘Amerindian’ (indigenous American indians).  There are many ‘mestizos’ (mixed Amerindian-Spanish/European) but less so in the Andean highlands, away from the capital, Lima.  And also a significant Asian (Japanese, Chinese) population or mixed ethnicity. Continue reading

‘Adagio’ TDA1541A non-oversampling DAC

When I first listened to DACs, I concluded quite quickly that ‘multi-bit’ DACs sounded more like music to me, than ‘bitstream’ DACs – more dynamic & ‘alive’.

The TDA1541 was originally developed by Philips (in 1985) as a high performance stereo DAC.  The ‘A’ version was manufactured between 1989-1995.  It was (is still?) regarded as one of the best sounding DACs ever made.  This chip was used in almost 100 different CD players Continue reading